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‘Recruiter sexually abused Filipina workers’

First Posted 12:27:00 06/29/2009

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MANILA, Philippines?Two Filipino female workers are preparing to file rape charges against their Arab recruiter in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, even as 20 more workers sought to be rescued from the same recruitment agency over reports that they have been sexually abused too, a global alliance of migrant workers said on Monday.

Garry Martinez, chairman of the Migrante International, said the two Filipina domestic helpers are awaiting the results of their medico-legal tests that would be used to file formal charges before the prosecutor?s office in Dammam against a certain Abu Khalid, owner and manager of Maqpoon Belahodood General Service Company which recruited them to work in Saudi.

In a phone interview, Martinez said the two OFWs, whose names are being withheld, were rescued with the help of Migrante and the Saudi police on June 23.

He said the two OFWs told Migrante of their ?harrowing ordeal? in the hands of their Arab recruiter. He added the two victims also expressed fear about the situation of some 20 Filipina who remain in the premises of the recruitment agency, saying they could have been subjected to sexual abuse too.

In a related development, another OFW, Aileen Baldiray, escaped rape and told of how the Saudi recruiter tried to rape her.

?Abu Khalid also tried to rape me. It was about 9:00 in the evening when he summoned me to his office downstairs. Upon entering the room, he told me to sit down in front of his desk and casually told me of his sex life. When he noticed that I was already getting nervous, Abu Khalid immediately took off his clothes. I grabbed a pen that I saw in his desk and warned him that if he pursues with his evil plan I would be forced to stab him,? she said in a statement.

?Khalid became reluctant when he saw me with the pen. He then shouted at me to get out of the office and told me that I was the only Filipina in the building he was not able to ?taste? yet and that he will make sure that he will be able to rape me next time around,? she added.

Martinez sought the help of the Philippine embassy officials in the rape case of the two workers and in the rescue of the 20 others. He said the 20 Filipinas have been forced to return to Khalid?s agency after they encountered problems with their employers. He said OFWs normally return to the agency that recruited them.

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